Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 28 Old Aug 19th, 2011, 11:54 am Thread Starter
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Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

I just sold my Goldwing and purchased a 2011 R1200 RT, so am a newbie to BMW. I've not had a radar detector for 20+ years, so have no idea what to buy. Any advice from those of you who are current with the technology and features would sure be appreciated, so thanks in advance for your help.

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post #2 of 28 Old Aug 19th, 2011, 2:12 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

You can't go wrong with, and IMHO, Valentine 1 is the best of the bunch because of it's range and the amount of detail information it gives you. Instead of just a tone alert, it will tell you what kind of signal it is receiving, how many and from which direction. All this info I find very helpful to decide if a particular alert is the real deal and especially from where it is coming from. Another nice feature is after a period of time, you can get an upgrade (actually a new unit) for about half the cost.

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post #3 of 28 Old Aug 19th, 2011, 3:50 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Passport 8500 works very well too. Saved my bacon several times in the last 3 years.

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post #4 of 28 Old Aug 19th, 2011, 4:45 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

I have the Whistler Pro 3600 with the optional Rear Laser / Radar module on my GTL & love it. Most people do NOT even know I have it on the bike as all you really see is a 1"X3"X1/2" LED screen on the dash.

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post #5 of 28 Old Sep 2nd, 2011, 7:33 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Valentine One for me.

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post #6 of 28 Old Sep 2nd, 2011, 7:51 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

V 1 for me

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post #7 of 28 Old Sep 3rd, 2011, 6:47 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Passport 9500ix for me

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post #8 of 28 Old Sep 3rd, 2011, 7:23 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

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Originally Posted by rdtebeau
Passport 9500ix for me
Me too.......very happy with mine! Works very well.
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post #9 of 28 Old Sep 4th, 2011, 9:40 am
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

I have a Valentine One with optional remote audio adapter. Traveled the country with it, ticket free.

I'll shoot you a PM. I'm thinking of selling it ... trying to slow down. I'll probably regret it once it's gone.

- Joe
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post #10 of 28 Old Sep 4th, 2011, 2:55 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

V1 here too!

Onve you have the arrows and the Bogey counter ya can't go back!

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post #11 of 28 Old Sep 5th, 2011, 4:12 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Oh my, not radar detectors again!

Ok, for those of you that swear by them, good for you. For those of you that have gotten citations while using one, I'm sure you're swearing at them. A few basic facts about radar that might help you decide wether they're worth it or not.

Today's modern radar devices in use by LEO's have a stand by mode. That means they're not sending out a signal or wave to be detected. Once the officer identifies a target, he/she visually estimates the speed then pulls the trigger so to speak. At that very instant, they have your speed...at the speed of light, which is 186,000 miles per second. Here in NC we have to be certified to operate Radar and Laser/Lidar. The class is two weeks long and if you can't estimate speed within 3.5 mph of the actual speed then you fail. It isn't easy.

Another very effective speed measuring device is VASCAR (TDI). Basically, a computerized stop watch and time distance measuring instrument. Two white lines 1/8 of a mile apart, the target is timed between those lines and they have your speed. This device sends out nothing to be detected. Please keep this in mind when making an expensive purchase.

All of the detectors on the market will detect radar if it's being transmitted constantly. Where they will fail you is when it's used properly in stand by mode. Oh, dont forget about airborn LEO's using helicopters and VASCAR. BTW, any device that jams SMI's is illegal.

Hope this helps.

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post #12 of 28 Old Sep 5th, 2011, 4:26 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-NC
Oh my, not radar detectors again!

Ok, for those of you that swear by them, good for you. For those of you that have gotten citations while using one, I'm sure you're swearing at them. A few basic facts about radar that might help you decide wether they're worth it or not.

Today's modern radar devices in use by LEO's have a stand by mode. That means they're not sending out a signal or wave to be detected. Once the officer identifies a target, he/she visually estimates the speed then pulls the trigger so to speak. At that very instant, they have your speed...at the speed of light, which is 186,000 miles per second. Here in NC we have to be certified to operate Radar and Laser/Lidar. The class is two weeks long and if you can't estimate speed within 3.5 mph of the actual speed then you fail. It isn't easy.

Another very effective speed measuring device is VASCAR (TDI). Basically, a computerized stop watch and time distance measuring instrument. Two white lines 1/8 of a mile apart, the target is timed between those lines and they have your speed. This device sends out nothing to be detected. Please keep this in mind when making an expensive purchase.

All of the detectors on the market will detect radar if it's being transmitted constantly. Where they will fail you is when it's used properly in stand by mode. Oh, dont forget about airborn LEO's using helicopters and VASCAR. BTW, any device that jams SMI's is illegal.

Hope this helps.
Brian although your facts are correct in parcticality you assessment is DEAD-WRONG in most circumstances.

the part you are correct on is in the situation where you are the Only car on the road for a couple miles ahead of you. Otherwise your are completely mistaken.

Although it does take some experience to interpret what your device is telling you.

If LEO is picking fish out of a barrel in front (or in the case of the V1) behind you, you will get consistent very short intermittent alarms. when I get these I ALWAYS intrepret them as RADAR. So your premise that the signal must be constantly on is wrong. How often is a Leo going to be letting all the traffic go by in front of you and only shooting you. It just does not happen that way.
And yes in the rare if non-existent case that you are the absolute only one he shoots in a flow of traffic you are correct.

In the 30 plus years I've used a detector, never received a ticket when I was using it!

DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT!

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post #13 of 28 Old Sep 5th, 2011, 9:51 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman
Brian although your facts are correct in parcticality you assessment is DEAD-WRONG in most circumstances.

the part you are correct on is in the situation where you are the Only car on the road for a couple miles ahead of you. Otherwise your are completely mistaken.

Although it does take some experience to interpret what your device is telling you.

If LEO is picking fish out of a barrel in front (or in the case of the V1) behind you, you will get consistent very short intermittent alarms. when I get these I ALWAYS intrepret them as RADAR. So your premise that the signal must be constantly on is wrong. How often is a Leo going to be letting all the traffic go by in front of you and only shooting you. It just does not happen that way.
And yes in the rare if non-existent case that you are the absolute only one he shoots in a flow of traffic you are correct.

In the 30 plus years I've used a detector, never received a ticket when I was using it!

DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT!
As I suspected, my advice would bring out questions, confusion, and mild insults but it's way too late to go into the particulars or any in depth explanation. My intention was to explain to the original poster that there are numerous ways to end up holding a pink copy wether you have a radar detector or 17 detectors. Hell, if it makes you feel good, stick a couple rabbits feet in your pocket. Maybe I should've explained it differently to make the point, lots of us don't use RADAR.

I'm sorry that you feel that I'm "DEAD WRONG in most circumstances and otherwise, completely mistaken". So, Bellows, disregard my suggestions and advice and go with whatever Atomicman tells you. Maybe you'll have his kind of luck...maybe.

BTW, in the 25+ years that I've been writing tickets, I've seen a lot of radar detectors get smashed on the side of the road by the owners. It's a perk, kinda like dohnuts...

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post #14 of 28 Old Sep 5th, 2011, 11:20 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-NC
As I suspected, my advice would bring out questions, confusion, and mild insults but it's way too late to go into the particulars or any in depth explanation. My intention was to explain to the original poster that there are numerous ways to end up holding a pink copy wether you have a radar detector or 17 detectors. Hell, if it makes you feel good, stick a couple rabbits feet in your pocket. Maybe I should've explained it differently to make the point, lots of us don't use RADAR.

I'm sorry that you feel that I'm "DEAD WRONG in most circumstances and otherwise, completely mistaken". So, Bellows, disregard my suggestions and advice and go with whatever Atomicman tells you. Maybe you'll have his kind of luck...maybe.

BTW, in the 25+ years that I've been writing tickets, I've seen a lot of radar detectors get smashed on the side of the road by the owners. It's a perk, kinda like dohnuts...
No reason to get your panties in a bunch.

Since apparantly anything you say is the gospel!

As i explained, a detector is not fool proof. there are many situations that it will do you no good as I agreed! But there are many that it will save your ass. And it has!

Ya get to be goodenough to recognize the difference.

And you don't think you have a bit of a tainted view of things?

My record has nothing to do with luck There is no such thing as luck!. (remember luck is when opportunity meets preparedness!) Just discerning use of a very useful tool.

By the way the Valentine 1 tells you how many of you guys are out there shooting, what direction the signal is coming from (forward, to the side or from the rear) which signal is the strongest (and what band of 4 bands it is on! including laser. X, Y, Ka .

Is it perfect, as I said NO, but I'll take my chance with it rather then without!

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post #15 of 28 Old Sep 6th, 2011, 3:27 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman
No reason to get your panties in a bunch.

Since apparantly anything you say is the gospel!

As i explained, a detector is not fool proof. there are many situations that it will do you no good as I agreed! But there are many that it will save your ass. And it has!

Ya get to be goodenough to recognize the difference.

And you don't think you have a bit of a tainted view of things?

My record has nothing to do with luck There is no such thing as luck!. (remember luck is when opportunity meets preparedness!) Just discerning use of a very useful tool.

By the way the Valentine 1 tells you how many of you guys are out there shooting, what direction the signal is coming from (forward, to the side or from the rear) which signal is the strongest (and what band of 4 bands it is on! including laser. X, Y, Ka .

Is it perfect, as I said NO, but I'll take my chance with it rather then without!
As I said, my point is not what radar does or how good your detector is, it's simply my advice to not rely on a device too much and develop a false sense of security. I love VASCAR when it comes to SMIs.

I don't have a tainted view of anything...just giving the guy some good advice. As far as our useless banter, I'm done. We've hijacked too much already.

Ride safe, Ride smart.

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post #16 of 28 Old Sep 6th, 2011, 4:05 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-NC
As I said, my point is not what radar does or how good your detector is, it's simply my advice to not rely on a device too much and develop a false sense of security. I love VASCAR when it comes to SMIs.

I don't have a tainted view of anything...just giving the guy some good advice. As far as our useless banter, I'm done. We've hijacked too much already.

Ride safe, Ride smart.
fair enough, Keep the shiny side UP!

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post #17 of 28 Old Sep 6th, 2011, 8:50 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

V 1 for me. Well for the wife she is the lead foot of the family. She thinks I drive like a grampa

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post #18 of 28 Old Sep 6th, 2011, 9:40 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

[QUOTE=Brian-NC]Oh my, not radar detectors again!

Ok, for those of you that swear by them, good for you. For those of you that have gotten citations while using one, I'm sure you're swearing at them. A few basic facts about radar that might help you decide wether they're worth it or not.

Today's modern radar devices in use by LEO's have a stand by mode.
QUOTE] I rode my LT all over the country, 120,000 miles in 4 years, with a permanently mounted V1. Never got a ticket, but the V! "probably" saved me from one a few times.

For the last 4 years it has been in my pickup, and in my car when we take it on trips.

Again, likely saved me a couple of times at least.

The one thing you state means little, that the radars have standby mode. Yes, they do, but in my experience it is rarely used, and if it is, it us usually in town. Around here, I am constantly seeing LEO's (local police, sheriff, and State Troopers) riding with the radars constantly emitting, and I get radar warnings long before I ever see them.

I do not drive really fast now, usually 5-10 MPH over posted, but like to know if a LEO is around just in case I have inadverdently speeded up over my normal speed, which is really easy to do.

You may use the instant on mode, but most don't. I have been warned of those too though, when they shoot someone ahead of me.

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post #19 of 28 Old Sep 25th, 2011, 6:54 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

David I have the same experience as you.

V1 for me. I also have had, many times, the detector go off where a LEO has used instant on for cars in front of me. For the LEO's using radar based speed detection, around NY and PA it seems like most of them leave it always on, not sure why. There are of course many limitations - no radar detector will tell you what a LEO is thinking, and for the LIDAR (Laser) based devices the V1 will pretty much only tell you that you've just been zapped, or the car in front or behind has been.

But I'm very happy with mine (actually it's my second one after someone stole the last one) - the arrows make a world of difference.

Good luck with your decision.

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post #20 of 28 Old Dec 4th, 2011, 12:32 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-NC
Oh my, not radar detectors again!

Ok, for those of you that swear by them, good for you. For those of you that have gotten citations while using one, I'm sure you're swearing at them. A few basic facts about radar that might help you decide wether they're worth it or not.

Today's modern radar devices in use by LEO's have a stand by mode. That means they're not sending out a signal or wave to be detected. Once the officer identifies a target, he/she visually estimates the speed then pulls the trigger so to speak. At that very instant, they have your speed...at the speed of light, which is 186,000 miles per second. Here in NC we have to be certified to operate Radar and Laser/Lidar. The class is two weeks long and if you can't estimate speed within 3.5 mph of the actual speed then you fail. It isn't easy.

Another very effective speed measuring device is VASCAR (TDI). Basically, a computerized stop watch and time distance measuring instrument. Two white lines 1/8 of a mile apart, the target is timed between those lines and they have your speed. This device sends out nothing to be detected. Please keep this in mind when making an expensive purchase.

All of the detectors on the market will detect radar if it's being transmitted constantly. Where they will fail you is when it's used properly in stand by mode. Oh, dont forget about airborn LEO's using helicopters and VASCAR. BTW, any device that jams SMI's is illegal.

Hope this helps.
very true information. the radar detector helps only when the officers are lazy. which in most cases is the truth.the detector is still only a tool and one must continue to pay very close attention to there surroundings/traffic and general location. Or just follow the speed limit. yes I have been stopped with my detector on (Escort 8500). Yes i have gotten tickets. I do not count on the detector to keep me aware I use it as a tool to enhance my awareness.


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post #21 of 28 Old Dec 17th, 2011, 9:22 am
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Valentine 1 is a clear "best choice." The multiple bogey indicator and directional signals offer a distinct advantage over other detectors. As for "instant on", sure, it can catch you if you are the only car on the road that is speeding or for some insane reason the LEO decides to only shoot you. However, if you ride smart and make sure there are cars in front of you that the LEO is likely to shoot, you WILL pick up those signals and adjust your speed. ( I use the 5 super bight LED attachment from Legal Speeding to insure I see the warning. Tried their H.A.R.D system and did not like the light inside my helmet.) Could I still get nailed with instant on? Only if I am not playing it smart and paying attention. Bear in the air? Sometimes you just have to take your chances. This is infrequent enough in any area I normally ride and/or is used only in conjunction with radar on the ground that I can detect that I am willing to take my chances.

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post #22 of 28 Old Dec 17th, 2011, 11:34 am
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Yet another reason to get the Valentine One.

Another reason I LOVE the Valentine one:

Mine has been in use for many years, and a few months ago on a long trip it started going nuts, and on a trip to WI and back to Tn it started false signaling often to almost constantly. For about 400 miles it was false signaling strong signals, many bogeys, and all directions.

I looked on Valentine's web site and saw that they would repair them for a $45 charge. I sent it to them with the $45 check enclosed, and in just a few days received it back, repaired, with the check in the box!

What other company will repair a many year old device like that?

Customer support from them is exceptional, as I have seen others say over the years.

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post #23 of 28 Old Dec 17th, 2011, 12:09 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

You guys with Valentines on your 1200RT's- can you hear the detector ok? I'm assuming so, I can hear my stereo pretty good, but wanted to check.
Thanks!
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post #24 of 28 Old Dec 17th, 2011, 2:06 pm
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Sheesh... A little conversation amongst friends turned ugly quick!

I would have to agree with both parties of the argument above. Most LEO's are smart about the use of their equipment, but some are just plain lazy and drive around town listening to the TONE to alert them to the offending car/motorcycle.

That said, nothing is fool proof. If an LEO is smart, he can sit and write "performance awards" all day. If its your turn, its your turn. Running 5-10 MPH over, may not be a target for THAT LEO or it may.

To the OP's subject, the V1 has a great following and most that spend that amount of $$ swear by it (as we see above). While it just may well be that they are simply justifying the expense paid out or it (V1) actually is the "Cats Meow" is a personal experience.

I have Adaptiv Technologies TPX system. Easy and functional, but not that much cheaper than the V1. I've plumbed the audio into my Comsystem and have a visual aid as well.

IMHO, Radar detectors are still a gamble, although you do have a "leg up" on the general public in avoiding the bastards! ( ) In my experience over the last year with it, utilization with Lydar ( Laser ) is useless. I stopped a CHP motor officer that was doing his thing and asked him to "shoot" me while we were sitting at a stop. He had a "read", released the trigger and then my unit went off.

As with most things we use, they are tools to help us make a decision. As I tend to go balls out, anything that will save my ass will be utilized to the fullest extent possible.

Quote:
BTW, any device that jams SMI's is illegal.
True, But they are not illegal to purchase! And if they will help foil the LEO's Tax man mentality, I'll take the hit if they can catch me, and determine what and where it is. Using a stand alone unit vs. one that is buried inside the LT would be key.

"What's that black bar down there? Well Mr. Officer, those are remote radar detector leads.!"

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post #25 of 28 Old Feb 28th, 2013, 7:44 pm
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Interesting that VASCAR is even used by anyone anymore. The problem is that it is totally in control of the officer pushing buttons, and that gives room to "play" and make an invalid reading, thus I have busted every one I ever defended for a client on that basis.

Same problem with helicopters. Besides the fact that it has the same discretionary button pushing problem the VASCAR has, there is the nice situation that the officer calling down the speeds to whoever writes the ticket is creating a "hearsay" problem. Unless the clocking officer is present in court (99% of the time, never), the writing officer cannot testify as to the speed as it is hearsay and will be excluded if objected to. Beat a bunch of those for clients also

Helicopter clocking is also terribly expensive, and most jurisdictions I know of have stopped that nonsense when they get the fuel and maintenance bills on any kind of aircraft operation these days. Poor return on investment.

Lasers also have the problem that they have a limited range, and a good detector will sniff them if the officer pulls the trigger too quickly.

Probably better to simply obey the speed limit or be able "roll the gold".

Of course, we lawyers always enjoy getting new clients

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post #26 of 28 Old Mar 29th, 2013, 12:13 am
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Ordered a V1 yesterday ... Hard to decide on mounting though. I have a Zumo centered on a BMW shelf and am thinking about attaching an offset mini shelf (think BMR type) for the radar detector to mount to. Thinking the offset from center would allow a better field of vision behind me ... or perhaps i am still limiting the rearward effectiveness and should just go with the unused mirror mount option ...

Chris

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post #27 of 28 Old Mar 29th, 2013, 12:43 am
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Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moot
Valentine 1 is a clear "best choice." The multiple bogey indicator and directional signals offer a distinct advantage over other detectors. As for "instant on", sure, it can catch you if you are the only car on the road that is speeding or for some insane reason the LEO decides to only shoot you. However, if you ride smart and make sure there are cars in front of you that the LEO is likely to shoot, you WILL pick up those signals and adjust your speed. ( I use the 5 super bight LED attachment from Legal Speeding to insure I see the warning. Tried their H.A.R.D system and did not like the light inside my helmet.) Could I still get nailed with instant on? Only if I am not playing it smart and paying attention. Bear in the air? Sometimes you just have to take your chances. This is infrequent enough in any area I normally ride and/or is used only in conjunction with radar on the ground that I can detect that I am willing to take my chances.
+1 Valentine One with optional remote audio adapter... This is the setup I ride with.
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post #28 of 28 Old Apr 2nd, 2013, 11:31 am
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Smile Re: Can anyone suggest the best radar detector to buy today?

I have a beltronics pro. Use it occasionally. My wife doesn't like them - the old radar detectors I had would have too many false alarms. Since my speedometer is 5 mph off, she says just go the speed limit as indicated on the bike, then we will never be over. Of course, who can do that on a LT.

Jim G - Rochester, MN
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